Last week, close to 80 patient experience leaders came together in Washington, D.C. for the inaugural meeting of the Patient Experience Policy Forum (PXPF). I had the pleasure of attending this historic event and contributing my own perspective of working in patient experience metrics and measurement.
The meeting kicked off with presentations reflecting the perspectives of healthcare organizations and patients on the delivery of patient-centered care, going back to the early history of Western medicine and highlighting where we stand today.
The day was filled with presentations that introduced the PXPF Charter and the organization’s board members. We also had work group discussions around six major actions that the PXPF has set out to undertake:
Advance patient-provider partnerships
Strengthen support for patient and family involvement
Strengthen support for professional involvement
Improve patient-centered measurement and reporting
Elevate the value case
The live broadcast at noon began with an overview from Jason A. Wolf, PhD, CPXP, President of The Beryl Institute. During his talk, Wolf formally introduced the PXPF Co-Chairs; Shari Berman, Patient Advocate and Co-Chair of The Beryl Institute Global Patient and Family Advisory Council and Rick Evans, Senior Vice President and Chief Experience Officer for the NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital. The broadcast included statements from Evans and Berman about who we are and what we intend to achieve as the PXPF.
In the afternoon, we split into our work groups which were organized around the six actions listed above. We shared our perspectives with fellow work group members on the policy-influencing activities we anticipate to undertake, and our co-chairs shared reports with the larger group.
Then, we heard from health policy leaders - such as Jeff Brady, MD, MPH, Director, Center for Quality Improvement and Patient Safety at Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality - who came to share advice on “how to get things done on the Hill.”
A full day of discussions ended with commitments by work group members and co-chairs to continue the work we started during this first meeting.
In later conversations with some fellow attendees, I got the distinct impression that we all expected to come out of the meeting with even more specific homework and action items - the excitement in the room was palpable!
We were there because we all know it is time for patient experience leaders reflecting both organizational and patient perspectives to be heard by federal policy makers.
It is time because patient experience is an industry movement that has grown so far beyond its origin (in patient satisfaction) even before CAHPS surveys came in place. Patients’ perceptions of the care they receive matter, because these perceptions shape how patients and providers interact - which ultimately impacts outcomes for the delivery of patient-centered care.
It was great to have taken the first steps toward getting the attention we deserve from policy-makers as a more formally represented field of expertise and community of practice whose perspective matters in shaping healthcare policy in the US.
The tougher and more exciting work is ahead of us to advocate for policies that will:
Reflect the perspectives of patients, families, and their clinical care providers
Provide the necessary support for providers to build effective relationships with patients and families
Eliminate the disparities of the care experienced by marginalized patient populations
Innovate how patient experience is measured and how results are reported
Articulate the direct connection of patient experience to healthcare outcomes